Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, where each week blogger and columnist Alex Ziebart answers your questions about the lore and history of the World of Warcraft. Ask your questions in the comments section below, and we'll try to answer it in a future edition.
We seem to be plagued with Scourge and Lich King sorts of questions lately, but that's to be expected. We're all playing Wrath of the Lich King, so it's far more likely we'll get Scourge questions than, say... Naga questions. I welcome your love of undeath with open arms.
What do the tally marks on Highlord Bolvar's shield represent? Battles? Years in exile? One night stands? Or are they there to just look cool?
This answer is going to disappoint you, just like it disappointed me: They're only there to look cool. The tally marks aren't just on Bolvar's shield, they're built right onto that shield model. Every player who acquired the Grand Marshal's Aegis back in the day has those tally marks. It's nothing exclusive to Bolvar, as much as I wish they were. If you go check out the Grand Marshal's Aegis on Wowhead and click the View in 3D button, you can see the tally marks. Or just in the screenshot above, I suppose, which I picked up from Wowhead so you should give them a little thank-you traffic.
Where does Naxxramas play a role in Arthas' whole plot? It's a Pre-BC raid correct?
Also, what new bosses can we expect to fight before the end all battle with the Lich King himself? I am assuming he will have a bunch of bad ass henchmen we will have to clear before getting a shot at killing him, right?
Naxxramas is basically a floating assault base. Load up the troops, fly them over to your battlefield of choice, and you instantly have a forward base camp right in enemy territory, where otherwise you'd need to bite and claw for every single inch. Acherus is a similar structure, and look how that went. The Scourge didn't need to try and go through the front gates into the Scarlet stronghold, they just flew in from behind. Instant access to the Scarlet Crusade's inner haven.
Naxxramas was originally ruling over and reinforcing the Eastern Plaguelands, but we adventurers managed to infiltrate and topple the citadel. Unfortunately, a traitorous dog in the Argent Dawn screwed us over, so Naxxramas flies again. This time around, it looks like Naxxramas is meant to be defending the Wrath Gate (the only ground level access to Icecrown) and the Alliance is keeping it busy.
As far as what bosses we'll be seeing in Icecrown before Arthas... who knows? We know we'll be fighting Sindragosa, the Frost Wyrm from the Wrath cinematic. I'm willing to bet we'll see something with Saurfang Jr. and Highlord Bolvar, but that's just speculation. We don't know much about what's coming in Icecrown.
Okay so I'm just now figuring out lore and all that, are the outlands where the orcs are from? Draenor I believe it was called? If not, what are the outlands, a prison for all the threats against Azeroth?
Yeah, Outland is where the Orcs are from, and it's otherwise known as Draenor. The Draenei also lived there for quite awhile, but they're not natives. They gave it the name 'Draenor' but they haven't always lived there.
It might seem like a prison for threats against Azeroth, but that's just what sort of happened on that planet. It was a fine and dandy place before, but it's just full of bad things nowadays. We did get rid of the Illidari and Illidan's lackies, so things should be a little better there for awhile. At least, until the Burning Legion decides to move in again while we're busy dealing with other problems, like the Lich King.
So, for the sake of conversation, lets say we kill Arthas. What happens to all the Scourge afterwards? Do they all drop down dead, or end up like the Forsaken?
Also, what do you think the Ebon Blade will do once the loot has been handed out?
We don't know the answer to either of these, but they are pretty good conversation starters. It's a possibility that the Scourge will just be broken and slowly picked apart once their driving force is removed... but who knows it destroying Arthas's body will be the end of the Lich King? Who says destroying the armor will be the end of Ner'zhul? We don't actually know.
Maybe shattering the armor will just release Ner'zhul from his shackles, and he'll move on to a new host and the entire Northrend war effort will have been trivialized. Oh sure, we wiped out a ton of the Scourge, but did it really change anything?
As for the Ebon Blade... we don't really know what they want, beyond vengeance. Hell, maybe they think the whole 'life in undeath' thing is a pretty good idea but they just don't want to be pawns to some overlord guy. I find that unlikely, but who knows? Maybe we'll be saying 'Darion' or even 'Tirion' when we refer to the Lich King after this expansion.